• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Compare ‘Shall Icompare thee to a summer’s day?’ by W. Shakespeare, ‘How do I love thee? Let me count the ways’ by E. Barrett Browning, and ‘Sonnet’ by Drayton - Which of the three sonnets made the strongest impression o

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Compare 'Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?' by W. Shakespeare, 'How do I love thee? Let me count the ways' by E. Barrett Browning, and 'Sonnet' by Drayton. Which of the three sonnets made the strongest impression on you? Explain your preference. All three of the sonnets are love poems. They are all dramatic monologues in which a poet apparently addresses a person he/she loves. Both Drayton and Shakespeare wrote Shakespearian sonnets whereas E Barrett Browning chose to write a Petrarchan sonnet. Drayton and Shakespeare also include a reversal of meaning in their sonnets but E Barrett Browning has no reversal. Shakespeare and E Barrett Browning also consider that love relates to time and think about the immortality of love. E Barrett Browning's Petrarchan sonnet is unconventional as it is written by a lady to a man. It's also unconventional because it is sincere and has no Volta which emphasizes the authenticity of her love to her husband. On the other hand Drayton and Shakespeare's sonnets are conventional and conform to the structure of a typical sonnet. They both start with one meaning and then cleverly change to another. Another similarity between Shakespeare and Drayton's sonnets is that they use a great deal of elaborate imagery. Yet E Barrett Browning uses direct and tender language and very little imagery. ...read more.

Middle

He also very formally addresses the lady as 'you'. Then definite formal parting is suggested; "Shake hands forever, cancel all our vows" and he urges her to make a break. Then the sonnet seems to change meaning and be at an elaborate death bed scene. Love, passion, faith and innocence are all given human characteristics; "Now at the last gasp of Love's latest breath, When his pulse is failing, Passion speechless lies, When Faith is kneeling by his bed of Death, And Innocence is closing up his eyes". The use of capital letters for 'Love' 'Passion' 'Faith' and 'Innocence' also suggests that they are people. The last rhyming couplet is a clever paradox which in fact is the real Volta of the Sonnet makes an intimate appeal to breath life back into their love; "Now if thou wouldst, when all have given him over, From death to Life, thou might'st him yet recover." He now addresses the lady as 'thou' which suggest intimacy. The final sonnet 'Sonnet 93' by E. Barrett Browning is almost totally different to the other two sonnets by Shakespeare and Drayton. This sonnet is unconventional as it is a sincere love poem from a woman to man rather than man to woman. It doesn't include a Volta so it suggests consistency of the love. ...read more.

Conclusion

E. Barrett Browning doesn't use a Volta in her sonnet as she wants to show her love is continuous and eternal which is a contrast from the other two poems. All three sonnets appear to be about love but all show different meanings. Shakespeare's sonnet seems to be about a true physical attraction to a lady and how her beauty is eternal when in fact he is really saying the beauty of his words are eternal. On the other hand Drayton's sonnet appears to be about a dying woman when in fact it's about a fading love desperate for love to be breathed into it. Finally E. Barrett Browning's sonnet is totally sincere and includes no reversal of meaning. The sonnets also have different forms and language. Shakespeare and Drayton both write a Shakespearian sonnet with complicated and elaborate language whereas E. Barrett Browning uses a Petrarchan form with simple language. Another resemblance is that E. Barrett Browning and Shakespeare consider love relates to time. The most obvious contrast is that Drayton and Shakespeare both use a Volta whereas E. Barrett Browning doesn't. Although I liked the clever, witty changes of meaning in the sonnets by Shakespeare and Drayton my favored sonnet would have to be 'Sonnet 93' by E. Barrett Browning. I liked it because of the sincerity of her love to her husband. I think when reading and understanding the sonnet the reader is emotionally touched by the strong feelings such simple words can put across. Samantha Pennington ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Sonnets section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sonnets essays

  1. Critical Appreciation of "Since There's No Help" By Michael Drayton.

    This is a view, which I personally disagree with. While, in the final couplet the tone unexpectedly changes, with the poet saying that it is up to his lover (presumably Anne) to revitalise their relationship and breathe life into it, because, despite the sentiments expressed in the opening two stanzas,

  2. Sonnets. There are three different types of sonnets, Petrarchan, Shakespearian and Spenserian, and they ...

    face "Better by far you should forget and smile Than that you should remember and be sad" she just wants everyone to be happy and move on with their lives and not stay in one place and be miserable with sad memories.

  1. Are there any ways in which you consider that experiences conveyed by the sonnets, ...

    The abrupt change of the tone is heard in the first word, the tone is more certain and definite, as well as straight forward and clear, this reflects what is expressed in the first line, she is love, and will not play games, but will tell the person how she feels in a clear and simple way.

  2. What is love? Compare and contrast Shakespeare's presentation of it's paradox in sonnets 116 ...

    Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway in 1582 with whom he had three children a daughter Susanna in 1583 and twins - a boy and a girl - in 1585 sadly the boy died 11 years later. He is said to have left Stratford and gone to London to carry on his career as an actor and playwright.

  1. Free essay

    Analyse Shakespeares attitude to love

    Again, sonnet 144, refers to love through the use of religious imagery. We hear of the poets' involvement in a love triangle between a man and a woman, it is not clear whether this is a tangible or fabricated friendship "...

  2. In order for a poem to be classified as a sonnet, it must meet ...

    to be thought of as a "youth," as well as acting as a justification (in his mind at least) of his own attempted deceit. The use of assonance in the final line makes for another pun: "faults" sounds like "false," a word which, in Shakespeare's day, occurred as a noun

  1. Immortality in Shakespeare's Sonnets. Sonnets 65,104,108, and 116 demonstrate how he has defeated ...

    Continuing on Love, Shakespeare executes the idea of love being immortal in sonnet 116. ?Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove.? Now, this poem is exactly what love being immortal is all about.

  2. Analysis of Sheakespeare's Sonnet 73 "That time of year thou mayst in me behold"

    As with the first comparison, this symbolizes the ending of his youth, and the takeover of old age. A second metaphor is used in the last line, mirroring the one used to describe the branches. This time, he uses a secondary metaphor to personify the ?Black night? mentioned in line 7.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work